This West Coast debut traces the career of legendary scientist and conservationist Dr. Jane Goodall, from her childhood in the U.K. to her years in Africa studying chimpanzees (including a breakthrough discovery of their use of tools) to her current role as an activist and advocate.
Goodall’s life story is wildly inspiring: That with determination, compassion and curiosity, a single person can drastically change how we think about our place within the natural world. The exhibit can’t quite capture all of that, but it does present an easy-to-understand, kid-friendly retelling of her life’s work (a more sensitive corner on chimps in captivity is tucked behind a curtain).
For her work observing chimps in the wild, the exhibition employs some particularly neat technological tricks: a hologram-like rendering of Goodall, beautifully-shot video walls, a CG recreation of chimp behavior that hovers behind a window and projections that appear to literally grow out of her notebook, to name a few.
“Becoming Jane” also features some of Hugo van Lawick’s stunning footage of Goodall in Africa. If you find that particularly compelling, we’d recommend the 2017 documentary Jane for a deeper dive into her groundbreaking observance of chimps.